Although a few battery power cases have been released for the iPhone 5, most have done so without Apple approved lightning connectors, and it has been a frequent problem. It is easy to identify those cases because the base of the connectors are white, rather than the approved black. (Here's some explanation.) The Juice Pack Helium from Mophie contains the approved connector, and the iPhone 5 slides seamlessly into the case. The case is currently available in dark gray. At the end of March it will also be available in silver.
Juice Pack Helium iPhone 5 case
Apple approved lightning connectorl. (The base is black.)
The Juice Pack Helium battery is 1500 mAh and provides approximately 80 percent more battery life for the phone. Battery life will vary depending on the activities engaged in when using the iPhone. The case is rechargeable for over 500 full cycles (from 0 to 100 percent) It is 13 percent thinner than previous models from Mophie and supports advanced forward-ported acoustics that redirect the audio toward the user.
There are four LED lights that indicate battery charge levels and a standby switch that can be flipped when needed. Both the Helium case and the iPhone 5 can be recharged simultaneously. A micro-USB cable is included for charging.
View of LED lights and recharge port
Using the product
I have used this the Juice Pack Helium case for two weeks and there are three things that I particularly love about it.
- The look and feel. The matte finish is attractive and the soft interior finish hugs my phone so that there is a snug fit and no danger of scratches. The case comes apart for easy insertion and removal and connecting the two pieces is smooth and simple.
- The size. It is slim and thin and fits in my pocket like any other iPhone 5 case. I remember earlier Mophie cases that had a large hump on the end to provide for the battery. This case is no bigger than any other iPhone 5 case and is much smaller than the hard rubber, heavy duty cases.
- The ability to charge both the case and the phone simultaneously. I truly love this feature.
Without using the Juice Pack Helium my iPhone 5 stayed charged less than a day. Using it, my phone can go two days on a charge. That is my personal experience. Those who use their phone with greater frequency, or watch videos, etc. on their phones will probably have different results.
I have dropped my phone twice while it was wearing the Juice Pack Helium and there was no damage either time.
Do I recommend it?
I do. It is attractive, gives me longer battery life, comfortably fits in my pocket, meets Apple specs, recharges my phone while recharging the case, and is reasonably priced.